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1998 Nagano and 2002 Salt Lake City: Catriona LeMay Doan

On skates and skis and snowboards, Canadians are nothing short of spectacular. From cocky snowboarder Ross Rebagliati to shy speed skater Gaétan Boucher to prairie girl Sandra Schmirler, Canada has groomed some of the finest winter athletes to take the world stage. CBC Archives presents a selection of Canada's golden winter Olympians.

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At the 1994 Lillehammer Olympics, Catriona LeMay Doan reached a turning point. After slipping and crashing to the ice during the 500 metre race, the powerful speed skater began a deeply personal search for meaning, she tells CBC Radio. With help from her husband Bart, a devout Christian, LeMay Doan rediscovered her faith, gained perspective and finally began to realize her potential. "Faith is leaving it up to God and realizing that he is in control," she tells CBC Radio.

At the 1998 Olympics, LeMay Doan had a stellar showing, claiming gold in the 500m race and bronze in the 1000m event. Now in 2002, she is preparing for her fourth Olympics in Salt Lake City. The ever-smiling LeMay Doan is being touted as one of Canada's best medal hopes and she won't disappoint. She will successfully defend her gold medal and her title as the fastest woman on ice.
• Catriona LeMay was born on Dec. 23, 1970, in Saskatoon, Sask.
• LeMay began speed skating as a young girl and quickly began defeating all of her competitors. "She did so well, we never did have other skaters in her age group. They all got too frustrated and quit," coach Henrietta Goplen told the Calgary Herald.

• In 1994 in Lillehammer, LeMay Doan slipped and fell in the 500m race as fellow Canadian speed skater Susan Auch successfully raced to silver. LeMay Doan later told Maclean's, "I think falling in the last Olympics has given me a better perspective. I realize there are things I can control and things I can't. I need to concentrate on what I do well and not worry about making a mistake." Four years later in Nagano, it was LeMay Doan who captured gold as Auch finished second.

• In 1995, LeMay married Bart Doan, an ice technician at the Olympic Oval and a rodeo star.
• LeMay Doan was the flag bearer twice at the Olympics -- at the closing ceremonies in Nagano and at the opening ceremonies in Salt Lake City.
• In 2002, LeMay Doan was awarded the Lou Marsh Award as Canada's athlete of the year.

• In 2003, LeMay Doan retired from amateur sport. On her website, she indicated that she would like to continue public speaking and try her hand at broadcasting.
Medium: Radio
Program: The Inside Track
Guest: Catriona LeMay Doan
Host: Robin Brown
Duration: 15:24
Broadcast Date: Mar. 18, 2001

Last updated: December 23, 2014

Page consulted on December 23, 2014

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